Saturday, December 22, 2012


In my kitchen I usually have two dishes, prepared and ready: brown rice and miso soup.  I know what you are thinking: that's all that macrobiotics talks about, but you will see from my archived recipes an astonishing array of dishes.  Just last week I taught a cooking class and my client was astonished that in 4 dishes we used 10 different vegetables.  So why Ojiya?  Because it is dark and cold in the morning and because I am just a wee bit tired of oats ( but that will change).  Ojiya lifts my spirits and nourishes me on a very deep level.  If you read my blog this month:  you will see that this inward cycle is important to our well being for the year.  

leftover brown rice
leftover miso soup

Mix the two and bring to a simmer.  Simmer very gently for 5 minutes.

That's it !  Easy!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Black Soybean Tea (for lung congestion)

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1 cup black soybeans
1 2" piece of kombu
4 cups water  

Chop the kombu and add to the soybeans and water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 35-40 minutes. Strain the liquid and drink while hot.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Green Tea Kanten with Mint

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2 cups strong green tea (use 1 full teabag per cup of water and steep for 5 minutes)
2 cups water
3 tablespoons kanten flakes
4 tablespoons brown rice syrup
fresh mint, finely sliced
small honeydew melon, scooped in balls
pinch of sea salt

Bring the water and the kanten to a low boil. Simmer on a low flame for 5 minutes. Add the green tea and the brown rice syrup. Mix gently and cool in a shallow dish. Cool on the counter and then place in refrigerator until firm.
Mix the melon balls with a pinch of sea salt and the mint. Let sit for 15 minutes. Mix in the kanten cubes.

Lemon Pudding

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1 1/2 cups amazake 
1 1/2 cups apple juice 
1/4 cup rice syrup
Juice of one lemon
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 tsp lemon zest
2 heaping T. agar flakes
2 heaping T. kuzu diluted in lemon juice
Pinch sea salt

Bring apple juice, amazake rice syrup, pinch sea salt and 2 T. agar flakes up to a gentle boil on low flame. Simmer for 5 minutes, stirring every once in a while. In a small bowl mix kuzu with the lemon juice until dissolved.   Add kuzu mixture to the liquid in the pot and stir while the mixture thickens.  Add vanilla and stir.  Cool before refrigerating  Pour into dessert bowls.  Let set.  Garnish with fresh berries, lemon slices or toasted almonds or walnuts.

Kinpira Soup

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Burdock root
Lotus root (if available)
Sesame oil
Winter squash or cabbage
Sweet young miso and dark barley miso

Chop equal amounts of burdock, carrot and lotus root (if using). Saute burdock for about 3 minutes in sesame oil. Add a pinch of sea salt. Layer the lotus root and carrot on top of the burdock. Cover with water, bring to a boil, lower the flame, cover and simmer for up to 40 minutes or until the vegetables are very soft. Add a little water, if needed. Add finely chopped onion and cabbage or squash and cook for another 20 minutes. Mix the miso’s 50-50 and dilute with some broth. Simmer for another 5 minutes

Millet Sweet Vegetable Soup

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1 carrot, chopped 
1 stalk celery chopped 
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 small parsnip, chopped
some cubed and peeled winter squash
1 cup millet
salt or sweet white miso
4-6 cups water (depending on thickness you like)

Wash millet and dry roast in a pan over low heat till it smells nutty. Add millet and vegetables to water with a pinch of salt, bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 30 minutes.  Add more salt to taste.


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Thinly slice and lay on a large serving platter:
OnionWinter Squash
Bean Sprouts
Cooked Udon Noodles
Grated Ginger
Fresh tofu cut in triangles

4 cups water
1 piece of kombu
a couple of dried shitake, soaked a bit
bontio flakes, optional

grated ginger

1) Make the dashi by combining ingredients, except the bonito. Bring to a boil, add the bonito (if using) turn down and simmer a few minutes. Strain out the bonito. Remove kombu and use in another dish like beans. Remove shitake and slice. Place with vegetables on the platter (see above)

2) Mix the sauce ingredients

3) Put the ceramic nabe pot on the gas burner. Add a cup or so of the dashi. Place the thinly sliced vegetables, bean sprouts, tofu in sections around the pot. Add cooked noodles to the top. Cover the nabe pot and bring to a boil. Be careful or the broth will boil out. The meal is ready when you steam coming out of the nabe top hole. Be sure to use a pot holder when opening the pot.

To serve: Place a bit of the sauce in the bottom of a bowl. Add a bit of broth to mix. Using your chopsticks remove the veggies and noodles and ladle on some broth.Yum, a 1 pot meal in a bowl!


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A combination of root and round vegetables, cut into chunks
1 - 2 inch strip of kombu, soaked and sliced
Sea salt

Place the kombu and water in the bottom of a pan. The water should be very shallow and just cover the bottom of the pan. Layer the vegetables or place them around the pot. Add a pinch of sea salt. Cover the pan and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Lower the flame to simmer and cook for 20 minutes. If the water evaporates, add a little more just to cover the bottom of the pan. Add a few drops of shoyu and gently shake the vegetables. Re-cover and cook for another 5 minutes.


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1 cup dried posole (you can mail order)
vegetable broth (homemade is best and easy to make)
1 large roasted green chile (you can use canned)
1/4 cup sundried tomatoes
1 onion
olive oil
2 teaspoons red chili powder
1/2 package seitan

Soak posole overnight in water to cover. Soak the sundried tomatoes in warm water and save the liquid. Chop the onion and saute in the olive oil. Add the chili powder and continue to saute until the onions are translucent. Cut the seitan into bite sized pieces. Cut the green chili into strips. Add the green chili, sundried tomatoes and the soaking water, the drained posole and the seitan. Cover with vegetable broth by about 2 inches. Bring to a boil, covered, turn heat down and simmer for 2 hours, adding vegetable broth as needed.
Serve with warm whole wheat tortillas.

Pressed Salad

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Green cabbage
Red cabbage
Red onion

Finely slice cabbages. Slice red onion in very thin 1/2 moons. Combine all vegetables in a bowl. Add 1/4 teaspoon salt per 2 cups of vegetables. Mix the salt throughout with your hand until everything is nicely coated.

Place a plate on top of the vegetables and weigh the plate down with something heavy. Press for 1 hour. Remove the weight and pour off the liquid.

Note: You can use many different combinations like finely grated or matchstick carrots, thinly sliced red radish. You can add shredded green apple at the end or tangerine (in season).

Red Cabbage and Chestnuts

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4 cups red cabbage, thinly sliced
1 cup chestnuts, soaked 6-8 hours in 3 cups water
sea salt
½ cup grated granny smith apple
1 T. barley miso
4 thinly sliced pieces of lemon

Pressure cook the chestnuts with the soaking water and a pinch of sea salt for 30 minutes. Place the chestnuts and the remaining water in the bottom of a pot and layer in the cabbage and then the grated green apple. Simmer until almost tender about 10-15 minutes. Puree the miso with some broth and add gently to the cabbage. Simmer another 3 minutes and serve with the lemon slices.

Rice Salad

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2 cups cooked brown rice, long grain or basmati
1 carrot, diced
1 stalk celery, diced
a little corn, fresh or frozen
1 chopped dill pickle
1 tablespoon minced parsley
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon brown rice vinegar
1 tablespoon lemon juice

Blanch the vegetables, except pickle. Mix the vegetable in to the rice. Mix together the parsley, oil, water, vinegar and lemon juice. Add to the rice mixture and mix thru.

Roasted Squash and Sweet Potato Soup

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1 small to medium butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut in 1 inch chunks
1 sweet potato, peeled and cut in 1 inch chunks
olive oil
sea salt
1 medium yellow onion, chopped in 1 inch pieces

Preheat oven to 425. Line a roasting pan with parchment paper. Toss the squash and sweet potato with a bit of olive oil and a pinch of sea salt. Roast the veggies uncovered for 40 minutes.

In a large pot saute the onion in olive oil, adding a bit of sea salt as the onion breaks down, until transparent. Transfer the roasted veggies to the pot and add water to no more than 1 inch above the veggies. Add a pinch of sea salt. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer for about 20 minutes until the flavors have blended.

Remove the pot from the heat and with an immersion blender blend the soup. I like mine with some small chunks.

Correct the seasoning and enjoy!

Seitan: Gingered with Vegetables and White Miso Sauce

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1½ T. olive oil
2 cloves garlic
1 ½ T. grated ginger
1 small onion, sliced across the grain
1 leek, thinly sliced on the diagonal
¼ head of cabbage, thinly sliced
2 carrots, julienne
sea salt
2 cups seitan, cut in to thin flat strips
2-3 T. white miso
2-3 T. mirin or sake

Heat the oil in a large pan and add the garlic. Sauté for 1 minute and add the onions and sauté until translucent. Add a bit of water and the leek and continue to sauté for 2 minutes. Add the cabbage, carrot and a pinch of sea salt and sauté briefly. Cover and cook for 10 minutes. Gently stir in the seitan, cover and cook another couple of minutes. You may add bit of water if the pan is too dry. Combine the miso with mirin or sake and mix in to the vegetables . Add 1 T water if the pan is too dry.

Simple Broccoli Rabe

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1 bunch broccoli rabe 
olive oil 
2 cloves garlic
sweet white onion (if you can find a vidalia all the better)
red pepper flakes

Wash the greens thoroughly and cut in 2 inch pieces, separating the stems from the leafy part. Chop the onion. Sliver the garlic. 

Add some olive oil to a pre heated cast iron skillet. Saute the garlic briefly, add the onion and continue to saute till the onion browns a bit. Add the rabe stems and saute for a few minutes until they start to turn bright green. Then add the rabe leaves and saute for another couple of minutes. Dash with some red pepper flakes and serve immediately!

Soba Salad

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1 package soba noodles
1/2 cup peanut butter
3 T. Brown rice vinegar
1 T. brown rice syrup or maple syrup
1 T. minced ginger
2 T. soy sauce
1 clove garlic
1 T. lime juice
1 tsp. lime zest
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
1 small cucumber, diced
1 large carrot, grated
2 T. chopped peanuts

Cook the noodles according to the package directions and drain in cool water. Puree the peanut butter, vinegar, sweetner, ginger, soy sauce, garlic, lime juice, lime zest and 1/2 of the cilantro. Blend until smooth and you may add a bit of water to make it more saucy. Toss the noodles with the peanut sauce and toss again with the carrot and cucumber. Add the peanuts to the top.

Spring Barley Soup

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1/2 cup hulled barley, soaked (not pearl barley)
2 carrots, diced
1/2 onion, diced
sea salt
1+ tablespoons mellow white miso

Place the soaked barley and the soaking water with the carrots and the onion in a pressure cooker. Add water to 2 inches over the grains and vegetables. Add a pinch of sea salt. Cover, bring to pressure on a medium high flame. When you are at pressure start timing for 40 minutes. Place a flame tamer under the pressure cooker and bring down the heat, but still maintain your pressure. I can get it down to low in my kitchen.

When the soup is cooked and the pressure is down, remove a bit of broth and mix with the miso. Return the miso mixture to the pot and simmer another 5 minutes.

Garnish with parsley.


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1/2 yellow onion, cut in 1/2 inch half moons
Nappa cabbage, cut in 1/2 inch ribbons
Kabocha squash, very thinly slicedBroccoli, cut in spears
Tofu, can used preseasoned variety, cut in triangles 

Place the veggies and tofu in sections in a skillet. Add water to half way up the ingredients (do not cover). Cover and place on medium high heat for 5 minutes. Add shoyu, cover, and cook for 3 minutes more until the vegetables are tender and very colorful.

Great with brown rice.

You can use any variety of vegetables as long as you slice thinly.

Summer Squash Soup

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4 cups yellow squash
5 cups water
1 ear corn, shaving kernels
1 onion
1 leek
sea salt

Saute a chopped onion in olive oil till wilted, but not brown. Add the squash, corn kernels, sea salt and water.

Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. While the soup simmers, slice the leek into 2 inch pieces and saute in olive oil till lightly browned.

When the soup is finished simmering, blend until creamy. Add the leek, taste for seasoning and simmer another 5 minutes. Garnish with freshly chopped parsley.

Toasted Barley Salad with Braised Portobello

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1 cup hato mugi, rinsed well*
1/2 cup corn kernels
2 cup water
2-3 scallions, thinly sliced on the diagonal
juice and zest of 1 lemon
1 small onion, sliced in thin half moons

Olive oil
3-4 large portabellas
2 leaves of kale or other green, coarsely chopped

Heat a skillet over medium heat. Toast barley until lightly golden, about 10 minutes.  Place the barley in a pot with the corn and water. Cover and bring to a boil. Add shoyu, cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer until the liquid has been absorbed, about 35 minutes. While the barley cooks, heat a small amount of oil and sauté the onions until limp.  Add the sliced portabellas and shoyu and miring and sauté until the mushrooms are limp. Cover, reduce the heat to low and simmer until the mushrooms release their juices. Sauté the kale or other greens till cooked. Add the mushrooms to the barley along with the lemon and scallions.

* whole grain brown hato mugi is available from the Natural Import Company

Sweet and Sour Tempeh or Tofu

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1 package tempeh cut in eight slices
sesame oil
2 cups water
4 tablespoons shoyu
1 tablespoon ginger juice
1 tablespoon brown rice syrup
1 tablespoon brown rice vinegar
1 tablespoon mustard
2 scallions, thinly sliced

In a large skillet pan fry the tempeh slices in sesame oil (just enough to coat the bottom of the pan).  Pan fry until browned.  Combine the water, ginger juice and shoyu and pour over tempeh in the skillet. Bring to a low boil, cover and simmer for 30 minutes.  Uncover and reduce the liquid until much of the liquid has boiled down. Remove tempeh and stir the syrup, vinegar and mustard in to the liquid. Add the tempeh back to the pot and heat together for a few minutes.

Tofu Drop Soup

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3 cups water
1 piece kombu
a couple of shitake
some slivered onion

Bring all ingredients to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 5-7 minutes.

Light Sesame oil 
1 celery stalk, diced
1 carrot, diced
mushrooms from the dashi, thinly sliced
2 cups dashi
1 teaspoon grated ginger
1 tablespoon shoyu
1 tablespoon kudzu dissolved in a little water
1/2 brick tofu cut in small cubes

Sauté the celery and carrots until wilting. In a saucepan combine dashi, ginger (squeeze the grated ginger with your hand to extract the juice) and shoyu. Bring to a boil, stir in dissolved kuzu, sautéed vegetables and tofu. Heat until almost boiling. Sauté the celery and carrots until wilting. In a saucepan combine dashi, ginger (squeeze the grated ginger with your hand to extract the juice) and shoyu. Bring to a boil, stir in dissolved kuzu, sautéed vegetables and tofu. Heat until almost boiling.

Tofu Eggless Salad

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(thanks to Jessica Porter, the Hip Chick’s Guide to Macrobiotics)

1 lb. tofu
½ cup tofu mayonnaise
¼ cup tahini
1 T. ume su
1 tsp. shoyu
¼ cup diced red onion
¼ cup diced dill pickles
½ tsp. mirin
¼ tsp. turmeric

Boil tofu in water for 5 minutes to make it more digestible. Mix the rest of the ingredients together and then crumble in the tofu.

Cauliflower and Carrot Curry

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1 T olive or grapeseed oil
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 medium size cauliflower, cut in to florets
3 carrots, cut in 1 inch cubes
1-2 tomatoes, diced
1 T jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
1 T garlic, minced
1 T ginger, peeled and minced
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp tumeric
1 tsp garam masala
2 T fresh cilantro or flat leaf parsley
salt and pepper

Heat the oil over medium high heat and saute the onion till translucent. Add the jalapeno, garlic, ginger, cumin, garam masala and turmeric and a pinch of sea salt. Saute for another couple of minutes and add the carrots, tomatoes and enough water to simmer a bit, about 7 minutes with the lid on. Start with 1/2 c water and if it gets too dry add more, 1/4 c of water at a time. The idea is to keep the dish moist but not turn it into a stew. Add the cauliflower, a bit more water if needed, cover again and simmer 20 more minutes until all the vegetables are tender. Season with salt and a few cracks of fresh pepper.

Carrot Dressing

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2 cups water for cooking
2 cups carrots, sliced in 1/8 inch rounds
2 T. tahini
2 tsp. shoyu
2 tsp. ume paste
2 tsp. walnut oil, or other non-flavored oil (optional)

Bring water to a boil with carrots and cook, uncovered, 8 minutes. Reserve the liquid and add carrots to a food processor along with tahini, ume, oil and shoyu. Blend until smooth and then add cooking liquid a little at a time until the dressing is the consistency for pouring. Cool Makes 2 cups.

Butternut Squash-Chickpea Stew

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2 cups chickpeas cooked and seasoned 
1 medium butternut or buttercup/kabocha squash cut in medium-sized pieces 
1 medium red onion, diced
1 carrot, diced
1 cup frozen green peas
sesame oil
Fresh squeezed ginger juice
Parsley for garnish

Heat pot and add oil to lightly coat bottom.  Add onions, a few pinches sea salt and sauté until onions begin to glisten. Add carrots.  Saute. Add squash pieces on top then layer on top cooked chickpeas. Add enough water (or stock from cooking chickpeas) to just cover squash (not covering chickpeas). Cover and bring to a boil. Cook about 20 minutes until squash tender.  Season with a little shoyu and cook for a few more minutes. Add frozen peas and squeeze in ginger juice. Cook for a few more minutes then serve.

Braised Lentil Sprouts

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1/2 red onion, diced 
olive oil 
curry powder (very optional)
sea salt
lentil sprouts

Heat about a tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet. If using curry powder add now to make a sort of roux. Add the onions and saute until soft, adding a bit of sea salt once the onions soften a bit. Stir in about 1/2 cup of lentil sprouts and saute for another minute.  Add water, but do not cover the sprouts. Another dash of sea salt and then cover the pan. Bring to a gentle boil, then simmer for 20 minutes.

* Dice portabellas are nice too. Add right after the onions and s saute a bit longer.

Baby Bok Choy with Shitake

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2-3 baby bok choy
sesame oil
2-3 fresh shitake
1 clove garlic, slivered
1 tsp grated ginger
1 tsp kuzu
1/4 cup water

Slice the shitake and saute in a bit of sesame oil with the ginger and garlic for a couple of minutes.

Slice the bok choy in half and lay on the shitake mixture. Add about a tablespoon of water, cover, and simmer on medium low heat for about 3-4 minutes. In the meantime, dissolve the kuzu in 1/4 cup water and swirl in to the bok choy when cooked.

Amazake Dressing

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½ cup amazake
2 T. sesame oil
2 T. olive oil¼ cup brown rice vinegar
1 T. red miso
1 clove garlic, minced

Blend all in blender.

Eating enough vegetables, especially greens, is not a problem when you are following macrobiotic suggestions. But sometimes, you just want to add an occasional oomph to blanched, steamed or pressed vegetables.

Adzuki Squash Kombu

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1/4 cup adzuki beans, soaked overnight
1 cup peeled winter squash
1 2 inch piece kombu, soaked for a few minutes

Place the kombu in a pot. Cut the squash into 2 inch chunks and place into the pot. Add adzuki beans on top of the squash. Cover with water and bring to a boil, covered. Lower the heat to simmer and cook for 1 1/2 to 2 hours until the dish is creamy. If needed, add more water a little at a time. Add a few drops of shoyu or some salt and simmer another 10 - 15 minutes.

Note: When squash is out-of-season, use carrot, parsnip and/or onions.

Braised Halibut

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1/2 cup vegetable stock
1/4 cup water
1 leek, cut in 1/2 inch slices
2 tomatoes
2 garlic cloves
sea salt
3/4 pound firm white fish (I used halibut tonight)

In a deep skillet, add the stock and the water. Core and cut the tomatoes, finely sliver the garlic and add to the liquid in the skillet with a few pinches of sea salt. Cover the skillet, bring to a boil, reduce the heat to simmer and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the fish and spoon a bit of juice over it.  Cover and cook on medium heat (about 10 minutes for a thick slice (2 inches) or 6 minutes for a thinner slice).

When cooked thru (it will flake with a fork) place on a plate and spoon the delicious braising juice over the fish.